BFAR says El Niño impact on aquaculture negligible

Posted by watchmen
May 14, 2024

The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) labeled as “negligible” the impact of the El Niño phenomenon on the fishery sector, particularly on aquaculture.

BFAR Western Visayas Regional Director Remia Aparri said 1,591 hectares of the fishpond in fresh and brackish water were damaged, affecting 600 fisherfolk.

She added that the cost of damage is almost P27 million, and in terms of tonnage is 144,760 kilograms.

Aparri, however, stressed that “it is negligible compared with the 334 metric tons overall production in 2023 since the losses were only around 14.47 metric tons.”

The official said there is no reported impact on commercial fishers; even coastal or captured fisheries continue to fish.

The only effect on captured fisheries is that fisherfolk travel farther into the sea, since fishes tend to go into the deeper portion of water to escape the intense heat.

Also, coastal fishers could not stay longer if they fish during the day, thus reducing their fish catch, although it is insignificant.

“Sometimes the temperature is favorable to the growth of natural food in the coastal ecosystem, which means there is more food for fish,” she added.

Nonetheless, Aparri said that they will prioritize those affected by the phenomenon once they start the distribution of their assistance funded by their regular program this latter part of May.

Among their interventions are the dispersal of bangus, hito, and tilapia fingerlings and post-harvest materials for value-adding.

“We will be giving priority to those affected by El Niño,” she said. (PNA)


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